House Approves the SKILLS Act

The House approved the Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills (SKILLS) Act (H.R. 803; introduced by Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC)) by a vote of 215 to 202. The legislation would consolidate 35 major workforce development programs, include most major programs authorized under the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), into a Workforce Innovation Fund that would provide funds to state and local workforce investment boards for employment and training programs. States would have the option of consolidating additional programs into the Workforce Innovation Fund; however, states could not consolidate Vocational Rehabilitation programs authorized under the Rehabilitation Act. The bill would also consolidate the Projects with Industry and State Supported Employment Services Programs into the existing Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) State Grants program. The Arc opposes this legislation. There is currently no companion bill in the Senate.